19 July 2010

Redemption Through Marriage?

Today I saw my cousin again.  He returned from Florida on Friday, where he visited my parents and one of his cousins.  And, my mother gave him a set of pots and pans, as well as a shawl and a bracelet, to bring to me. 

After we had lunch at the Bel Aire Diner (highly recommended!), he asked whether I'd want to take a ride to my  great-aunt's house.  There are two things he really likes to do:  talk and drive.  So, of course, he was completely in his element, and I saw something--not so much a "side" or "dimension" of him as much as his sometimes-contradictory values.

He asked me whether I could marry.  I said that now I could marry a man.  OK, it's not the first time anyone has asked me that.  Then he asked another question I've heard before:  "Do you think you will?"

After I said I probably won't be married, he expressed concern.  "I haven't ruled it out," I explained.  "But I really would have to meet the right person."

"But don't you worry that you'll grow old alone."

"People get married and have kids and still end up alone.  I've seen it."

"Yeah, but if you were to have a few kids, chances are that one of them, at least, will take care of you."

"Well, that's not the best bet to make.  It doesn't seem like a good reason to get married or have kids."

"It's not.  But you should think about marriage."

Now, I should mention that this cousin has religious beliefs that I don't share.  He doesn't quote the Bible directly; he does it second hand, as in, "a man isn't supposed to lie with a man."  Normally, I try to keep myself out of Bible (or religious) discussions:  Unless you totally agree with the other person /people, those discussions  don't turn out amicably.  But I did challenge him on one point:  He said the Bible also said a man shouldn't "change into" a woman.

I'll admit, I'm not a regular Bible reader.  But I don't recall any verse that said that.  

Anyway, I found it very interesting that even though he doesn't approve (because of his religion) of my "sex change," he's giving me the most traditional, even conservative, arguments for getting married to a man. He said that if I were to meet the right man, he would "take care of" me.  It's almost as if he were trying to "redeem" me through the sorts of marriage sanctioned by his church.